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Home The Lions Blog Lions Club of Melbourne Next Gen Named ANZI Top Club Service Award Finalist
Kindness Matters

Lions Club of Melbourne Next Gen Named ANZI Top Club Service Award Finalist

Lion Carolyn Hall October 18, 2021

Lions around the world have a talent of performing inspiring service in their communities. The Lions in CA VII Australia, New Zealand, Indonesia and the Pacific Islands—or ANZI for short—are no different.

This project has taught me and my friends so much, and how kids can also make a difference.

Several years ago, the CA VII Lions and Lion leaders decided that these exceptional service projects should be shared and celebrated. So, a local award to recognize outstanding service projects was created. They called it the Top Club Service Award. This annual award began in Lions year 2018-2019 under then Global Service Team (GST) Area Leader Past International Director Tony Benbow.

To be considered for the award, clubs must submit a new and innovative individual club project started by the club in the current Lion year. The submissions are then carefully considered by committees at the district, multiple district and constitutional area levels until two finalists and a winner are chosen. Winners receive a certificate, plaque and an announcement of the award at the ANZI Forum. We also highlight these incredible service projects on the Lions International blog.

Our first finalist showcased in this year’s awards is the Lions Club of Melbourne Next Gen in District 201V14 Australia, whose childhood cancer service project was motivated by a cub. This project, inspired by young Cub Davina, has grown from a small idea to a district-wide project with the help of the club members, First Vice District Governor (1FVDG) Harry Brindley and District GST Coordinator Lawrence Yau.

A few years ago, Cub Davina came across photographs of children who had lost their hair while undergoing cancer treatment and wanted to do something to help them. Her mom, Lion Viviana Pereira, suggested that she donate her hair. After donating her hair, other children at Cub Davina’s school were interested. With the help of their Lions club, the project “Cut Hair for Cancer Kids” was born.

Three of Cub Davina’s classmates also donated hair. Lion Rodney from the Lions Club of Charlton and 1FVDG Harry even cut their beards as donations as well. All hair was donated to Variety Australia. In addition to encouraging hair donations, the club created increased community awareness of childhood cancer and collected donations for the Australian Lions Childhood Cancer Research Foundation (ALCCRF).

All of their online education and fundraising used the hashtag #CutHair4CancerKids. During lockdown, they were able to record YouTube videos promoting the project and host an educational online presentation session on Facebook. Cub Davina and the club also presented the project at the District 201V14 Convention and at a district workshop.

In total, their hair donations directly impacted the lives of four children with cancer. The Lions Club of Melbourne Next Gen also raised $10,000 Australian dollars for childhood cancer research at the ALCCRF, and their online education reached more than 5,600 people.

When reflecting on the project, Cub Davina said, “This project has taught me and my friends so much, and how kids can also make a difference. We just need to have courage, leadership and responsibility in all that we do. I think this is a worthwhile project because it doesn’t matter how old you are, you can still participate. It can be an ongoing project—not just for our club, but for any other Leo or Lions club around the world.”

We would like to recognize the Lions Club of Melbourne Next Gen for their outstanding service project addressing childhood cancer. With their support, Cub Davina’s idea inspired an entire district and touched thousands of lives! If your club is interested in childhood cancer service, review the Service Project Ideas: Childhood Cancer for ideas on how to get started.

Look for upcoming blogs that will share the other ANZI Top Club Service Award finalists and winner.

Lion Carolyn Hall is a Global Action Team field specialist, primarily working with CA VII and CA III, at Lions Clubs International. She is a member of the Chicago Windy City Lions Club.

The coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic has impacted communities around the world in different ways. To ensure we’re serving safely wherever we live, Lions should follow the guidelines of the Centers for Disease Control, World Health Organization or local health authorities. Visit our Serving Safely page for resources that can help you safely serve your community.